Sponsored Post: Metal Braces or Invisalign?

By the time I was in 5th grade, it became extremely obvious that I was going to need some sort of orthodontic work done, especially for my upper jaw. My teeth were so crowded, that there wasn’t much room for my teeth to come in. I had to wear an expander and spacers before I could even get my braces put on.

There are other known “mouth” related issues on both my side and the kid’s dad’s side (and no, I don’t mean anything ugly by that!), so I have watched carefully as each child has grown.

Abbie’s potential issues were apparent early on. Even as a little girl, she seemed to have a bit of a crossbite, and as her permanent teeth have begun growing in, I’ve been unable to deny that some sort of orthodontic work will need to be done.

So, earlier this week we arrived at the UAB School of Dentistry to have her (and her brother!) examined and discuss a plan of action for them both.

Basically… there is work to be done. 

I’m a child of the 70’s and 80’s, so of course, I had the big clunky metal (OUCH!!) braces. But I was lucky: after just over 1.5 ys in braces, I was able to start 8th grade with a nice straight set of teeth.

I remember the pain, discomfort and issues associated with them: the sore teeth, the wires poking out and digging into the sides of my mouth, the food that would get stuck in them (eww!), the (temporary) end of my chewing gum habit…

Who would want to put there child through that if there were a better option?

That is where Invisalign Teen comes in:

“Invisalign Teen is a clear, plastic aligner therapy that was developed with leading orthodontists who understand the active lifestyles, unique treatment and compliance needs of teens. An effective alternative to metal braces, the new Invisalign Teen product combines the benefits of the proven Invisalign Full system with new features like blue Compliance Indicators that are designed to gradually fade as the aligner is worn, Eruption Tabs that accommodate the growth of secondary molars, and other features that address clinical needs common to teen patients.

Invisalign Teen treatment is ideal for busy parents because there are never any emergency appointments from broken wires or brackets. And you spend less time at the orthodontist’s office, with fewer appointments and less chair time for uncomfortable tightenings.”

emphasis mine

Seriously? Less hassle, fewer appointments, and features that were designed with teen patients in mind?

I did a thorough scouring of the Invisalign site and other information that was made available to me, and was amazed by how ridiculously easy it all looks.

Here is some of what I learned, specifically pertaining to the Invisalign Teen aligners:

  • Invisalign treatment consist of several smooth, comfortable removable plastic aligners, that look very similar to a teeth cleaning tray.
  • Your teen will receive a series aligners from the orthodontist, approximately every six weeks.
  • The aligners should be worn 20 to 22 hours per day but they can be removed for eating, brushing, and flossing.
  • Invisalign Teen differs from the adult version due to three new features that were designed specifically for a patient in the teen age-group:

1) “Compliance Indicator” which allows parents to ensure that their children are wearing the aligners for the proper amount of time.
2) “Eruption Tab” to accommodate for erupting teeth (teeth that are not in yet or partially in).
3) “Power Ridges” “are incorporated into aligners designed to help achieve certain difficult tooth movements”. (I had to dig deeper to understand what this meant, but essentially, the ridges create a better bond that allows for more effective straightening results due to better torque at the root, as the teeth move)

  • And because we know how easily kids misplace things, Invisalign Teen allows for six free replacement aligners.

Invisalign  makes a product for adults as well. The clear, nearly invisible look is what makes them especially appealing for adults.

I’m not sure of the route we will take, as we have just started this journey. While the cost can be comparable, since our insurance does not cover orthodontic work, cost will be a huge factor and influencer in our final decision.

But how amazing is it that we now have OPTIONS when it comes to teeth straightening?

Hopefully, one day, no one will have to suffer through being called a “Metal Mouth” or “Tinsel Teeth” again.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post and compensation was provided by SITS Girls and Invisalign via Gold PR. The opinions expressed herein are mine and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of the post sponsors.

My first mess

well… not really. I make plenty of messes every day. Too many to count.

The difference between those and this one? Most of them leave me frustrated at the added work placed upon my already busy day. But this one? I’m ok with it; I enjoyed making it. I found myself digging around for things to apply to it without worrying about how it would change or effect the overall look.

Have you started on your own journey to give up perfection?

What would it take for you to be able to do that?

Want to know what I’m talking about? Please read this post and feel free to join me!

Making a Mess and Learning to Let Go of Perfection

Recently, I’ve been feeling like, creatively, I’m sitting in a stagnant pool of cold murky gray water.

I’ve always been a creative person. I’ve found outlet after outlet to express my creativity, whether thru drawing and painting, writing, photography, graphic design, knitting, quilting. Something.

And I still do.

But lately, I’ve been struggling to find that creative spark; the one that ignites and burns and makes you see everything thru a different lens.

I’ve been playing around with things, trying to fit square pegs into round holes and nothing is catching fire. I even signed up for “Art Every Day Month”.

Do you know how many days I created something outside of my work?

zero.

So I began doing some research (how uncreative!!) and went to the bookstore, and I came across this: Mess: The Manual of Accidents and Mistakes

One of the most critical aspects of growing your creativity is to let go. Forget about perfect. Ignore perfection. Give.It.Up. And that is the what this book is about. It’s easy, no-pressured exercises in making mistakes.

Today was my first day. And now? I’m so excited about it that I purchased a domain, and I’ve set up a flickr group.

I am so excited. Beyond excited!

What am I asking? I’m asking you to join me. If you can, purchase the book. Work through it. And, once I have the Flickr group all set up, post your creations there. (**UPDATED: Flickr Group is hereIt’s not completely set up yet, but in the spirit of this, I’m letting go of that desire to wait until it’s “just so” and throw it on out there**)

Please know: There’s no pressure to keep up with this on a daily basis. Create whenever you desire.

Let’s do this. Let’s share our imperfect creations and realize that art is art and a creative mind comes in all shapes and sizes.

(ps – the book link is an affiliate link… all that means, is that if you purchase it using that link, I can buy a soda at McDonald’s)

Read More:
Giving Up Perfection Follow up post
My First Mess

All better (for now, at least…)

I don’t want to jinx it or anything…

but after weeks of every one feeling like this:

and this:

We are finally back to feeling like this:

And mama can get her writing and work groove back on!

Bring it.

Merry Christmas

We’ve been trying to simplify this Christmas. Boil it down to what it’s really about. In searching for things to share with the kids, I’ve come across several interesting, well-done videos. I’ve passed these along on my Facebook page, but I know that not everyone enjoys going on there. So, I’m cross-posting here.

Enjoy. And Merry Christmas.

Retooning the Nativity (Igniter Media):

The Digital Story of the Nativity (Excentric Media):

A Social Network Christmas (Igniter Media):

Jesus and Santa (Igniter Media):

As you can tell, I like the work that IgniterMedia does. You’ve probably viewed some of their work at your church. If not, pass along their link to your pastor, or church media people.